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Being Grateful

What are some of the things that you have been grateful for during this past week?

I was down in Timaru on Wednesday leading the funeral Mass for a friend I have known for around 33 years. I taught some of his children at Roncalli College in the 80’s.

Funerals are times when people close to the deceased acknowledge those qualities they were grateful for in their loved one. I was grateful to have had the opportunity to lead the service for such a generous and faith filled man and to support his wife who has been generous and encouraging to so many over the years too. She was certainly grateful as was all the family for how the funeral was conducted.

After the Mass, I was able to catch up with some of my former students who were present. Many years had passed but there was still a warm connection between us. It was great to see them. I came away affirmed by the sharing of memories, community and togetherness at a time when it is most needed.

The Gospel this Sunday (Luke 17:11-19) is the one about the 10 lepers and the Samaritan, who was the only one who came back to thank Jesus for the cure he had received.

Being grateful says something about our attitude of heart and sense of awareness. It certainly comes from a positive place.

Perhaps today and throughout the week we can be conscious of the people and situations we are grateful for and using our imagination throw ourselves at the feet of Jesus as the leper did and give thanks.

I have several songs about thanksgiving. You might like to sing along with, ‘It is Good to Give Thanks to the Lord’ (Psalm 92) from ‘Making Music to Your Name’ . The chorus could be a gentle reminder and thanksgiving prayer throughout the week.

It is good to give thanks to the Lord

To make music to your name O most high

On the ten-string lyre and the lute

It is good to give thanks to the Lord

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